Mabalacat City– “We will not privatize the Mabalacat City Water District,” said Deng Pangilinan, Mabalacat Water District chairman of the Committee on Special Projects.
This, after MCWD General Manager Francis Dimaliwat manifested his opposition to the proposed joint venture during the hearing at the Sangguniang Panlungsod Session Hall in Xevera on March 6.
“We respect his legal opinion but he has no legal basis. Joint venture is totally different from privatization as it means you are to dissolve the whole water district. That is illegal. The role of the management is to check on the daily operations of MCWD, we as the BODs are the ones looking after the welfare of our constituents five to 25 years from now, ” Pangilinan stressed.
With the rapid development in Clark and the premierization of the Clark Airport, Mabalacat City is seen to double its population and demand for water ten years from now.
On entering the joint venture, a feasibility study in terms of expansion, rehabilitation, improvement, bulk water supply and septage management system will be conducted by the proponents under the names of Prime Water, Manila Waters and Pamana Holdings.
MCWD, an local water utility operating through its income, sees the future partnership as a secured opportunity to upgrade its facilities thus provide sufficient and quality water services to Mabalaqueños.
“If the result is beneficial to our concessionaires, we will push through with the said venture. This will not affect the security of tenure of the existing employees of MCWD for they are protected by the regulations of the Civil Service Commission. Sinisuguro namin sa board na wala sa aming mga empleyado ang matatanggal sa trabaho kasama ng kanilang mga benepisyo na kasalukuyan nilang tinatanggap. Wala pong katotohanan na sila ay mawawalan ng trabaho,” Pangilinan added.
Under Presidential Decree No. 198, water districts are autonomous agencies independent of local government.